'I cannot do it,' Joseph replied to Pharaoh, 'but God will give Pharaoh the answer he desires.'"
Joseph had been given a wonderful gift, but this gift would only produce fruit as God worked through Joseph's life. This was the same lesson Paul tried to teach the Church in Corinth: "What do you have that you did not receive? And if you did receive it, why do you boast as though you did not?" (1 Corinthians 4:7). It's by God's grace we accomplish anything; "apart from Me you can do nothing" (John 15:5). It's by His grace we have talents and abilities. It's by His grace we obtain direction and motivation. In fact, it's by His grace we take our next breath! If God provides all the tools, He certainly deserves ALL the praise. Let's never miss an opportunity to use the gifts God has provided.
he second son he named Ephraim and said, "It is because God has made me fruitful in the land of my suffering."
It isn’t raining rain for you. It’s raining blessing. For, if you will but believe your Father’s Word, under that beating rain are springing up spiritual flowers of such fragrance and beauty as never before grew in that stormless, unchastened life of yours. You indeed see the rain. But do you see also the flowers? You are pained by the testings. But God sees the sweet flower of faith which is springing up in your life under those very trials.
Upon the Birth of Ephraim (by Linda Watson Owen. Linda is a pastor’s wife, church administrative assistant, and educator who lives and writes in Mississippi. She is a freelance writer for Ezraweb.com where her inspirational poems are featured in her weekly column.)
Oh, Ephraim, my son,
you are full fruit, Jehovah's blessing,
sprung from a slave's dark soil,
God's Hand has touched
the rod of my distress.
God's Hand has brought
your bloom forth from the sand.
This barren place of bondage sings
in full orbed sweetness
as foul dust departs
and makes way for
gift from Jehovah's Hand,
you are fruit grown
from God's great heart,